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LeoVegas has been granted a five-year licence for online gaming in the Netherlands.

The licence, granted by the Netherlands Gaming Authority (KSA), will allow LeoVegas to provide online casino, including live dealer, and online sports betting.

The operator, which obtained the licence via its Malta-based 21 Heads Up Limited subsidiary, intends to relaunch in the country during H2 2023.

LeoVegas operated online gambling in the Netherlands before the market regulated in October 2021. It withdrew its services as the market went live as it did not receive a licence.

The withdrawal created financial headwinds for the group, particularly in 2022, with the company no longer able to generate revenue from the Netherlands.

LeoVegas CEO Gustaf Hagman said: “LeoVegas has been granted a gaming licence in the rapidly growing Dutch market and we are thrilled to look to the future and fully focus on resuming our Dutch journey.

“The Netherlands has great potential, and we look forward to it becoming an important market in our global growth journey,” he added.

LeoVegas had hoped to re-enter the market in Autumn 2022, but was one of several operators to have struggled with regaining a licence after the market regulated.

Betsson Group, for example, was one of the biggest online gambling brands in the Netherlands pre-regulation, but is yet to return to the market on a regulated basis.

Kindred Group, however, managed to return to the country in July 2022 following a nine-month absence and the market once again accounts for a sizeable chunk of its revenue (43% in Q3 2022).

LeoVegas has been owned by US casino giant MGM Resorts since September 2022.

MGM said the $600m acquisition of LeoVegas would provide it with a unique opportunity to create a scaled global online gaming business by branching out into Europe.